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West Slope of the Cascades

Formed from massive lava flows from fifty million years ago, the once gentle western slope is now cut by deep canyons.

OR: Southern Cascade Range Region, Douglas County, Cascades West Slope, North Umpqua Valley, Calapooya Divide, View of the mountains of the Calapooya Divide [Ask for #279.119.]




The attractive town of Newport offers several museums dedicated to the Pacific coast, and 35 miles of beaches and cliffs.

OR: North Coast Region, Lincoln County, Pacific Coast, Newport Area, Town of Newport, Newport Bayfront, California sea lions on commercial fishing docks. [Ask for #278.101.]




This port town on the Umpqua River has a lively downtown. It sits at the northern end of the 54 mile long Oregon Dunes, with a good National Forest Service recreation area at its tip.

OR: South Coast Region, Lane County, Pacific Coast, Oregon Dunes, North of Florence, Holman Vista, View from the vista's boardwalk to the northern end of the Oregon Dunes, with wind-blasted tree [Ask for #278.161.]



Golden and Silver Falls State Park

This park deep in the Coast Range near Coos Bay features two tall waterfalls and a lovely old forest. Its approach road is a twenty-four mile scenic drive that dead-ends at the park.

OR: South Coast Region, Coos County, Coos Bay Area, Coos River Mountains, Gold and Silver Falls State Park, Silver Falls [Ask for #271.136.]



Covered Bridges That Carry Traffic

Twenty-nine of Oregon's 53 covered bridges remain an active part of the state's rural road network. This is a photo essay describing them.

OR: Willamette Valley Region, Lane County, South Willamette Valley, Eugene Area, McKenzie Hwy (SR 126 Corridor) (west of Vida), Goodpasture Covered Bridge, Oregon's longest covered bridge still in use, Goodpasture regularly carries logging trucks. [Ask for #277.387.]


The Rogue River Area

Rising outside Crater Lake National Park, the Rogue River digs a deep canyon from one side of the Coast Range to the other. Protected as a National Wild and Scenic River, it is Oregon's ultimate kayaking and rafting destination.

OR: Curry County, Coast Range, Rogue River Area, Bear Camp Coastal Route. Mature Douglas fir forests cover the higher elevations of this notoriously difficult scenic byway [Ask for #274.715.]



Pacific City Area

Starting fifteen miles north of Licoln City, this twenty mile long stretch of coast features remote beach towns and spectacular cliffs.

OR: North Coast Region, Tillamook County, Pacific Coast, Cape Meares, Cliffs of Cape Meares [Ask for #278.281.]




A selection of cliff pictures from along the coast.

OR: South Coast Region, Lane County, Pacific Coast, Florence Area, Florence's North Coast, Heceta Head, View over the cliff-lined beaches of Cape Cove towards Heceta Head and it's lighthouse from US 101 [Ask for #278.533.]



Bandon's Cliffs

Bandon, a town of 3,000 just a half-hour drive south of Coos Bay, may well have the most spectacular cliffs and beaches on the Pacific Coast.

OR: South Coast Region, Coos County, Bandon Area, South Beaches, Face Rock State Wayside, House sits atop sheer rock cliffs with a wide sandy beach below, spotted with large hoodoos [Ask for #274.353.]


The Best of 2017

The summer of 2017 saw travel up and down Oregon's coast, shooting in the mountains around the Rogue River Gorge, and covered bridges near Corvalis.

OR: Tillamook County, Pacific Coast, Cape Meares, Cape Meares Lighthouse. The sun shines directly through the light. [Ask for #278.511.]

More . . .


The Sixes and Elk Rivers

East of Cape Blanco the Sixes River and the Elk River drain the Coast Range. Both are beautiful but their characters are different. While the Sixes is exploited by loggers and gold miners, the Elk runs through cliffs on the borders of two wilderness areas.

OR: Curry County, Coast Range, Sixes River, Sixes River. A mining claim sign. Gold is found in the Sixes River's deposits [Ask for #277.008.]

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Cape Perpetua Cliffs

Between Florence and Yachats, thirteen miles of cliffs climax at 800' Cape Perpetua. Here US 101 travels along a shelf cut just above the Pacific, with stunning views.

OR: South Coast Region, Lane County, Pacific Coast, Cape Perpetua Area, Sea Lion Cliffs, Cliff view. The Sea Lion Caves attraction is visible in the distance. [Ask for #276.566.]

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BLM's Camp Creek Area

This little visited area features a ten mile long sandstone canyon that ends in one of the finest waterfalls of the Coast Range. Continue on the good paved road and you'll come to a first-rate view and a very strange bridge.

OR: South Coast Region, Douglas County, Coast Range, Reedsport Area, Camp Creek Area (BLM), Camp Creek Canyon, Camp Creek Falls, View of the waterfall [Ask for #276.980.]

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Reedsport and Florence

The towns behind the Oregon Dunes were once at the dead-ends of very long, very winding state roads. Now they are pleasant and attractive stops along the Oregon Coast Highway, US 101.

OR: Douglas County, Pacific Coast, Reedsport Area, Boardwalk, View over the Umpqua River towards the Coos Bay Rail Link steel truss drawbridge in open position; restaurant on the boardwalk [Ask for #274.533.]

More . . .

Coos Bay

All about Coos Bay. This is such a big subject that it has a number of sub-pages.

OR: South Coast Region, Coos County, Coos Bay Area, City of Coos Bay, Downtown, Waterfront, Coos Bay History Museum, Viewed over the pilings of a long-gone wharfside structure [Ask for #274.823.]



Coast Towns of Oregon

This lists every page on this site that's about a coastal town. It looks kinda like what you are looking at now.

OR: South Coast Region, Curry County, North Coast, Port Orford Area, Town of Port Orford, Fort Point, Battle Rock, Sand beach a block from downtown, with views towards marina below sea cliffs [Ask for #274.395.]



The Lakes Behind the Dunes

The Oregon Dunes block the mouths of all but the biggest rivers. As the rivers back up, lakes form.

Whisps of morning fog hang on Lake Tahkenich.



Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area

Oregon's largest dune field stretches for 55 miles, framed by cliffs at Florence and Coos Bay. Most of it is a national recreation area and even more remains in a wild state.

OR: South Coast Region, Lane County, Pacific Coast, Cliffs, Sea Lion Cliffs, View from the cliffs towards the northern terminus of the Oregon Dunes [Ask for #276.571.]



The Grand Canyon

Here are some pics I took on a brief swing through the park last September.

AZ: Northern Arizona Region, Coconino County, Grand Canyon Area, Grand Canyon National Park, South Rim, Mather Point, Paved footpath, overlook along the canyon rim [Ask for #275.052.]



Cape Blanco and Port Orford

This 20 mile stretch of coast features beaches, dunes, a lake, and lots of cliffs, with a lighthouse on the top of a cliff and a tiny harbor at the bottom of one.

OR: South Coast Region, Curry County, North Coast, Humbug Mountain Area, Humbug Mountain State Park, Cliff-lined beaches along the Pacific Hwy, US 101 [Ask for #274.430.]



Smith River Road

This scenic drive through the Coast Range offers an eighty-five mile long-cut from Reedsport to I-5. It's a forest drive that closely follows the Smith River from a tidal estuary to a mountaintop rivulet.

OR: Douglas County, Coast Range, Smith River Area, Lower Smith River, Smith River Road runs beneath cliffs in a road cut. [Ask for #276.034.]



The Fishing Village of Charleston

March 2016. Sitting off by itself on the southern edge of Coos Bay and hemmed in by the cliffs of Coos Head, the town of Charleston epitomizes the fishing village. Here commercial and sport fishing mix, and small seafood plants line its docks.

OR: Coos County, Coos Bay Area, Charleston Area, Charleston Harbor, Seafood restaurant on the floating docks [Ask for #276.197.]



Cliffs and Dunes of Oregon's Coast

March 2016. Oregon's coast is lined by alternating stretches of dunes and cliffs. The dunes can reach 500 feet high as far back as two miles from the beach, and the longest stretch of them exceeds 55 miles. Cliffs reach 1,700 feet above the ocean and can go on for 28 miles.

OR: South Coast Region, Coos County, Bandon Area, South Beaches, Face Rock State Wayside, Sheer rock cliffs with a wide sandy beach below, spotted with large hoodoos [Ask for #274.355.]



Cover Photographs by Jim Hargan

February 2016.This page shows all of the 36 covers — newspapers, magazines, and books — that feature photographs by Jim Hargan.

:  County, Wraparound of The Photographer's Guide to the Blue Ridge Parkway, 1st Ed, issued by Countryman Press in Spring 2010; all photography and text by Jim Hargan [Ask for #990.042.]



Mountains Surrounding The Old Wagon Road

January 2016. Paved roads follow ridgelines looming over the Old Coos Bay Wagon Road, forming a 67 mile loop around the East Fork Coquille River. These three pages describe the mountains themselves, the scenic drive (with directions), and a few of the more interesting back roads. And there are, of course, maps.

OR: Coos County, Coast Range, Coquille River Mountains, The Big View, A cliff face looms above Moon Creek Rd [Ask for #274.548.]



Cape Arago's Six Parks

Filed Under Coos Bay

January 2016. Cliffs line the Pacific side of the Cape Arago Peninsula; a wildlife-rich slough lines the other. They enclose a peninsula with six parks, featuring cliff-top walks and cliff-side picnicking, a dune-lined swimming beach, several remote beaches and coves, estuary boardwalks, a nature musuem, a formal garden, and three RV parks.

OR: Coos County, Coos Bay Area, Cape Arago Parks, Shore Acres Cliffs, High surf pounds against sea cliffs [Ask for #276.215.]



Driving the Old Coos Bay Wagon Road

Filed Under Mountain Backroads

January 2016. This 45 mile scenic drive follows Oregon's earliest road to survive intact — neither abandoned nor buried under modern highways. Alternating paved and gravel, it features pastoral farm valleys, old forests, deep gorges, and some spectacular waterfalls. This is the closest you can get to the roads followed by the earliest settlers.

OR: South Coast Region, Coos County, Coast Range, Old Coos Bay Wagon Road, Upper Brewster Canyon, Waterfall on the East Fork Coquille River, as viewed from the Old Wagon Road [Ask for #274.233.]



The Old Coos Bay Wagon Road

Filed Under Mountain Backroads

December 2015. Of all the wagon roads that served Oregon's earliest settlers, all but one are either abandoned or obliterated by modern highways — the Old Coos Bay Wagon Road (often called just "The Old Wagon Road"). Alone of Oregon's earliest roads it neither evolved into a major through route nor dwindled to a farm track.

OR: South Coast Region, Coos County, Coast Range, Old Coos Bay Wagon Road, Sitkum Community, The Old Wagon Road passes rock cliffss at the eastern edge of Sitkum. [Ask for #276.272.]



All of The Elliott's Side Roads

Interior Side Roads

Exterior Side Roads

November 2015. This describes all of The Elliott's side roads that can be driven with an ordinary vehicle, both the ones that run within the forest and the ones that connect it with the outside world It will tell you how to reach the Millacoma River as well as point you to the forest's closest access.

OR: South Coast Region, Coos County, Coast Range, Elliott State Forest, Northwestern Quadrant, FR 4000, This logging road links the state forest with the town of Lakeside [Ask for #274.619.]



A Scenic Loop Trough the Elliott State Forest

November 2015. The Ridgetop Drive circles through The Elliot, for 51 miles, following its highest ridges along good gravel roads. Here's your complete description, with lots of photos and a map.

OR: South Coast Region, Coos County, Coast Range, Elliott State Forest, The Ridgetop Drive, FR 1000, The forest road passes briefly through Weyerhauser's Millacoma Tree Farm, with views from a newly replanted clearcut [Ask for #274.A44.]



The Elliott State Forest (For Now)

August 2015. The State of Oregon is trying to sell the 93,000 acre Elliott State Forest to a single buyer, almost certainly a logging company. Until (and if) that happens, you have at least two years to enjoy its network of spectacular backroads. Here you'll find a complete map of every road that's remotely drivable — plus an explanation of why Oregon's three highest elected officials want to dump it. Plus, there's a map of all the motorable backroads in The Elliott.

OR: South Coast Region, Coos County, Coast Range, Elliott State Forest, Southwestern Quadrant, FR 3000, Good gravel road gives access to this actively logged state forest, here giving a wide view from a replanted clear cut [Ask for #274.166.]


Roads of the Coast Range

June 2015. Oregon's Coast Range is incredibly scenic, just the sort of place you might want to explore on back roads. Unfortunately, GPS and mapping apps fill these mountains with junk roads you couldn't possibly follow in a passenger car, or even an ATV. So here's my new project — to drive down, and accurately map, every motorable road that penetrates any distance into the Coast Range.

OR: South Coast Region, Coos County, Coquille Area, Coquille River Mountains, Burnt Mountain Area, Paved BLM road gives public access to these actively logged mountains [Ask for #274.100.]


The Upper Coos River

May 2015. Judging just from the maps it would be the most natural thing in the world for a good road to start in Coos Bay, then cut right through the mountains to the other side. Actually this road exists — you just can't drive on it, as it's part of the strictly private Weyerhauser Millicoma Tree Farm and blocked by gates. Foretunately there are other nifty places to explore in the area, such as the Coos County Forest...

OR: South Coast Region, Coos County, Coast Range, Coos River Mountains, The Coos River, Doris Place Boat Ramp, on the Coos River Highway (SR 241) [Ask for #274.577.]


Why Coos Bay? Four Reasons...

December 2014. If you could pick anywhere to live that you wanted to, why would you choose Coos Bay, Oregon? Here are four reasons ... plus a bonus reason.

OR: South Coast Region, Coos County, Coos Bay Area, Cape Arago Area, Cape Arago State Park, Cliff view [Ask for #271.156.]


The Coast Range — What's Its Story?

January 2015. So, I'm sitting in my rented house back East, waiting out the blasted winter so I can drive the family car across the continent to Coos Bay, and I'm wondering what the mountains there will be like. I was sort of expecting a low coastal range, with a great, flat-bottomed north-south valley behind that, and a range of great mountains behind that. What I've been finding, however, is something different, far more complicated and interesting. So I've made a map...

OR: South Coast Region, Coos County, Coos Bay Area, Coos River Mountains, Gold and Silver Falls State Park, Trail through forest [Ask for #271.138.]


From L.A. to Coos Bay in Five Days

August 2013. When my wife Kasey and I evaluated where we wanted to live we quickly settled on the Pacific coast with Coos Bay the clear favorite, and with this in mind we set up a five day drive up the coast from Los Angeles to Coos Bay followed a week in a bayside cottage just outside town. Here you'll find five pages about the five days we took, and what we found on our maiden trip to the Pacific Coast.

CA: South Coast Region, San Luis Obispo County, Pacific Coast Area, San Simeon, Northern Coast, View toward the Santa Lucia Range and the Big Sur [Ask for #271.039.]


OR: South Coast Region, Coos County, Long, narrow map of the Oregon coast, with land areas transparent. Shows Astoria to Cresent City, but no inland cities. [Ask for #990.102.] 


I'm Jim Hargan. My wife Kasey and I are celebrating the start of our third decade of marriage by moving to Oregon's Pacific coast from the opposite side of the country. This is going to be quite an adventure, and this blog covers it.

I've spent most of the last couple of decades as a travel writer and photographer, documenting the Southern Appalachians and helping people find the most involving and inspiring places. You can see some of my photography credits here. Now new mountains beckon.

So now that I've shifted three thousand miles westward, what next? I'll be doing what I'm good at — poking into strange corners and writing about what I find, with lots of photographs, right here on blogPacifica.

Exploring the Pacific Coast
Coos Bay, OR
e-mail:   jim@blogPacifica.com
Copyright ©2016, James A Hargan. All rights reserved.
All maps created using data from DeLorme Topo North America® v9.0, ©2010 DeLorme® (www.deLorme.com)
Contact the webmaster at maven@harganonline.com